A prime example happened back in Kiwiland last night - a possum on a Wairarapa powerline knocked out electricity to Masterton, Carterton, Greytown and Featherston. Thankfully, justice was served immediately to the culprit - the possum exploded after touching the powerlines, which caused electricity to arc metres through the air to blow up a nearby water main.
There are reportedly 7o million possums in NZ, chomping through seven million tonnes of native and non-native vegetation per year. With a human population of four million, that’s quite a ratio.
High on cute factor – they’re remarkably good looking compared to the right ugly ones I would dispatch from this world when we lived in San Diego – possum byproducts are now seeing the retail light of the world. The fur is being made into high-end bed spreads and jackets, while the hollow-fibre strands are being woven into cozy gloves, scarves and jumpers. Dang, I’ve even seen possum fur nipple warmers!
Most folks will see possums on the road at night, dazed by your oncoming headlights. It’s your duty to try and hit them. NZ’s fabulous national museum, Te Papa, even features a possum skeleton that’s melted into a road’s tarseal.